Whose com­mand­ments is the Repub­li­can Party fol­low­ing?

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - EDITORIAL PAGE -

Doug Thomp­son says (July 8) that Repub­li­cans agree “on guns and abor­tion [but] that is a short check­list.” In­deed, and it makes me won­der again why the base is so largely made up of evan­gel­i­cal Chris­tians, 81 per­cent of whom voted for Trump.

Guns aren’t in the Bible — they weren’t in­vented yet. Abor­tion is not men­tioned in the Old or New Tes­ta­ment. Nor was abor­tion ever a big is­sue for Protes­tants un­til the 1980s. Thanks to po­lit­i­cal op­er­a­tors, anti-abor­tion now looks to some folks like the main tenet of Chris­tian­ity.

The words “poor” and “poverty” ap­pear 446 times in 384 sep­a­rate verses in the Bible. “Jus­tice” ap­pears 1,576 times in 1,379 sep­a­rate verses. I guess only lib­er­als quote those verses.

Some peo­ple are up­set about a bro­ken mon­u­ment but not about the break­ing of ac­tual com­mand­ments by the leader of our coun­try. For in­stance (para­phras­ing) No. 9 says “Don’t lie.” But see http://www.poli­tifact.com/ per­son­al­i­ties/ don­ald-trump/.

No. 8 says “Don’t steal.” Trump has been sued hun­dreds of times by small busi­nesses for stiff­ing them — steal­ing their la­bor.

No. 10 says “Don’t covet your neigh­bor’s wife.” What about a man who gropes women with­out their con­sent? Or is this be­hav­ior covered by No. 7, “Do not com­mit adul­tery?”

An ar­ti­cle says Chris­tian right lead­ers are now el­e­vat­ing po­lit­i­cal prag­ma­tism over moral prin­ci­ple. Prag­ma­tism is a nice word for it. An­other one is hypocrisy. Or power-mon­ger­ing. Or per­haps Machi­avel­lian.

So what have Evan­gel­i­cals gained from their prag­ma­tism? First, hopes of over­turn­ing Roe v Wade. Of course, that wouldn’t end all abor­tion — only le­gal, safe abor­tion. Let women die for their sins! But don’t make tax­pay­ers pay for their de­liv­ery or feed their ba­bies.

Tax breaks for bil­lion­aires are in the works. Let’s see, what does the Bible say? “You can’t serve both God and mam­mon.” Oh well.

We’ve with­drawn from the cli­mate change treaty to save American jobs. Yet so­lar al­ready em­ploys more peo­ple for elec­tric­ity gen­er­a­tion (43 per­cent) than coal, gas, and oil com­bined (22 per­cent). “You shall not pol­lute the land in which you live.” Num­bers 36:33

The gov­ern­ment will keep ha­rass­ing and de­port­ing im­mi­grants. “You shall not de­prive a res­i­dent alien … of jus­tice.”

Congress will keep try­ing to re­peal Oba­macare. We can’t have uni­ver­sal health care like the rest of the world does. Why? Be­cause we might turn into a so­cial democ­racy like Swe­den, which is No. 1 on the Forbes list of best coun­tries for busi­ness, has main­tained peace and neu­tral­ity for a cen­tury, and of­fers 16 months of parental leave. Oh, the hor­ror!

“If it is pos­si­ble, as far as it de­pends on you, live at peace with ev­ery­one.” Is that part of the Repub­li­can plat­form? CORALIE KOONCE Fayet­teville

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